Saturday, October 15, 2011

Not Your Fantasy Creature

Written by: Diana Peterfreund
Released: August 25, 2009 by HarperTeen
Summary: Forget everything you ever knew about unicorns...
Real unicorns are venomous, man-eating monsters with huge fangs and razor-sharp horns. Fortunately, they've been extinct for a hundred and fifty years.
Or not.
Astrid had always scoffed at her eccentric mother's stories about killer unicorns. But when one of the monsters attacks her boyfriend—thereby ruining any chance of him taking her to the prom—Astrid finds herself headed to Rome to train as a unicorn hunter at the ancient cloisters the hunters have used for centuries.
However, at the cloisters all is not what it seems. Outside, the unicorns wait to attack. And within, Astrid faces other, unexpected threats: from the crumbling, bone-covered walls that vibrate with a terrible power to the hidden agendas of her fellow hunters to—perhaps most dangerously of all—her growing attraction to a handsome art student ... an attraction that could jeopardize everything.
I’ll admit, I’m a part of the world who thinks that unicorns are these amazingly beautiful beasts that look like a horse with a horn in the middle of their head. So I was a little weary about unicorns looking like goats and monsters... and, you know, the fact that they have a taste of human flesh. However, I found myself wanting a little Bonegrinder of my own – even though she would eat me as soon as snuggle – and the conflicting ability to hunt down the beasts.
I enjoyed reading this novel. I liked the inner battle that Astrid internally struggled with and her attraction to Giovanni which she saw as both an out and something that much more. I also liked the majority of Astrid’s fellow unicorn hunters though some fell flat for me and some of the other characters in the novel I just didn’t care for at all – like Lilith.
The battle scenes in this novel were rather epic. In fact, I can see where they would give a lot of people nightmares since they’re not for the faint of heart. There’s a lot of bloodshed, people, so be warned. The gore was perfect for an October monster read, though, and of that I’m glad. Plus, the fights were so well written that they drew the reader into the action and kept you on the edge of your seat.
I have the second novel all set to be read on my bookshelf and I can’t wait to see where the story goes. I thought that Rampant could have functioned as a stand-alone novel though the sequel will serve to answer a few questions that I have – like the source of the cure and what will happen to Giovanni and Astrid’s relationship.
In the end, there were parts of this novel that I fell either fell a little short or were just too drawn out. While I am looking forward to the sequel, I’m only giving this novel a 6.5/10.


Karen C said...

No! That sounds so wrong! Unicorns are cute horsey things with a horn. I think I'll have nightmares now just reading this post lol. Seriously though, great review. I'd never heard of this book before!

Chrystal said...

I have this sitting in my TBR pile and almost bought the second. Maybe I'll wait til I read it and see. Because the second might have to be a "borrow from the library" kind of book. :)

Thanks for the review.

Ashley @ Book Labyrinth said...

I really want to read this one since I loved Diana's 'Secret Society Girl' books. I know they're very different, haha, but I like her writing style in general and I enjoy fantasy as well. Glad you liked it for the most part. =)